Canadian managers are not expected to manage in an authoritarian or paternalistic manner but are, nonetheless, expected to be decisive.

Management style could be characterized as informal and friendly with managers preferring to be seen as ‘one of the guys’ rather than as an aloof figure who stands apart from everybody else.

Managers will consult widely when a decision is called for and expect input from all concerned parties. The final decision remains, however, firmly with the manager and quick decision-making is respected by all. Failure to consult widely could lead to a feeling of dissatisfaction amongst team members who will feel that the manger is acting in a dictatorial manner.

The manager is not necessarily expected to be the most technically competent person in the team but will be judged more on his or her ability to manage the resource which is the team — interpersonal and man-management skills are considered of vital importance.

A brief overview of some key concepts to consider when doing business in Canada

Written and Produced by Keith Warburton

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Overview

This country profile has been produced to give a short overview of some of the key concepts to bear in mind when doing business with contacts in Canada. It is intended to be an aid to business people who have commercial dealings with counterparties in the country but should not be seen as an exhaustive guide to this topic or as a substitute for more substantial research should there be a need.

With this in mind, we have covered the areas which are key to a better understanding of the cultural mindset underpinning business dealings in Canada and which are, quite often, extremely different from the approach and thought processes associated with business in other parts of the world.

Therefore this briefing note is broken into short, bite-sized sections on the following topics:

  • Background to business
  • Business Structures
  • Management style
  • Meetings
  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Women in business
  • Entertaining
  • Top tips